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Riconciliarsi con il “Sykes-Picot”

NEW YORK – Questo mese ricorre il centenario dell’Accordo Sykes-Picot, l’intesa segreta anglo-francese che ha dato origine ad una serie decennale di aggiustamenti dei confini del Medio Oriente post-ottomano. Quasi tutti i commenti riguardo all’anniversario sono stati negativi, suggerendo che all’accordo va attribuita gran parte della colpa per la frequenza e la durata dei conflitti nella regione.

Tale interpretazione, tuttavia, sfiora il ridicolo. Mark Sykes e François Georges-Picot intendevano definire un programma che consentisse a Gran Bretagna e Francia di evitare una disastrosa rivalità in Medio Oriente. Ci sono in gran parte riusciti: il loro disegno ha evitato che la regione si frapponesse tra le due potenze europee, ed è riuscito a sopravvivere per un secolo.

A dire il vero, molti dei confini dovuti al Sykes-Picot riflettevano la definizione di accordi ritagliati in Europa piuttosto che le realtà demografiche o storiche locali. Ma ciò difficilmente rende il Medio Oriente un caso unico: la maggior parte dei confini di tutto il mondo deve la propria eredità meno a progetti ponderati o a scelte popolari che ad un misto di violenza, ambizione, geografia, e caso.

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